#CBR10Bingo: Cover Art
Spoiler warning! This review will discuss plot points from the book in detail, because it is impossible for me to list the many ways in which this book did not work for me without mentioning them. If you are unfamiliar with Scotland, Edinburgh and couldn’t care less about the British peerage, then maybe these things will not bother you. Nevertheless, be warned that you may get spoilers if you continue with my review after the link to my blog.
New York socialite Portia Hobbs arrives in Edinburgh to complete an apprenticeship with a sword maker. Unfortunately, her new boss seems to be trying his very best to avoid her and while he’s very hot, he also seems to be severely lacking in social skills. One of the reasons Portia has decided to go to a different continent for a while is that she was pretty much a hot mess in her old life – drinking too much, sleeping around and hurting friends and family members. She’s determined to be a new and better Portia, and that person doesn’t sleep with her boss. So she does her best to help out his flagging business while waiting for him to teach her what she’s actually there to learn.
Tavish “Tav” McKenzie loves making swords and daggers, and as well as running Bodotria Armoury, he gives free fighting lessons to underprivileged kids and tries to make a difference in the rapidly gentrifying community. He doesn’t entirely see why his brother hired him an apprentice, and he certainly wasn’t expecting a posh and sexy American to show up, with tons of ideas of how he can improve his business through an improved social media presence. While he finds Portia very attractive, Tav is aware both of the difference in their ages and the fact that he’s her boss. He’s not intending to act on his attraction to her, and so instead tries to keep her at a distance by being as gruff as possible.
When Portia accidentally reveals on social media that Tav may in fact be the son of a duke, his life is suddenly changed completely and Portia feels responsible. Used to high society, she’s determined to coach him in etiquette, so he can assume his rightful position, if that’s what he wants to do.
I really wanted to like this. I did. I’d heard such good things about it on several romance review sites. The cover is beautiful. I think diversity in romance writing is incredibly important and Alyssa Cole cares about geeky stuff and complex and interesting female characters. Sadly, however, this book was not the book to win me over. I find it baffling that Ms Cole, who clearly writes very well researched historical romances set during the American Civil War shows such appalling lack of research skills when she writes in a contemporary setting.
Full review here.